Heart Disease Survivor Prompts SCAD Research With Social Media
By Traci Klein from Mayo Clinic News August 29, 2011 221
Conversation Between Cardiologist And Heart Disease Survivor Leads To Study
In October 2009, Dr. Sharonne Hayes, a cardiologist at Mayo Clinic who focuses on treating women with heart disease, was approached by a woman who’d experienced a rare cardiac condition. This conversation between the two happened at the annual WomenHeart Science & Leadership Symposium at Mayo Clinic. The woman previously had been told that her condition – spontaneous coronary artery dissection, also known as SCAD – was poorly understood, but that she was lucky because she survived. She was desperate for answers for herself and for others who suffered from SCAD. Dr. Hayes and the woman discussed the possibilities of a study. “I couldn’t not do this study, or at least try. The most powerful motivator was the patient need and my personal connection to this group of women through WomenHeart,” Dr. Hayes says. Today, almost two years later, the results of a pilot study – involving 12 SCAD survivors from four countries using social media – are published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings. An accompanying editorial calls the use of social media a “novel solution” to recruit research participants, particularly for rare conditions. A larger study is now open for recruitment.
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